There are no 2 words in English language more harmful than “good job” (from Whiplash) #MondayMorningWakeUpCall
In the movie Whiplash, Terence Fletcher, a music teacher, is obsessed with pushing his students beyond excellence. While his methods might be questionable, something I personally wouldn’t advocate, his philosophy on “good job” did resonate with me.
What he means by the above quote is that with the intent of encouragement we are developing a culture of being overtly safe in giving feedback. This often results in becoming complacent with our outcome which more often than not results in mediocrity if we do not push ourselves (or get pushed) to pursue excellence.
While one could argue that for many mediocre could be ‘good enough’, that they would be happy with doing a ‘good job’. But for those who have an extra appetite for excellence, I too like Terence Fletcher, would ask you to drop ‘good job’ from your dictionary and turn a deaf ear to the phrase whenever you hear it.